Why set up a website?
Why should anyone set up a website? If you are intending to start your own business having a corner of the web is imperative. It will cement your business as a trustworthy brand. Creating a website is the modern-day equivalent of a physical shop. Customers will believe in your brand purely from having the website and having quality content. To many, however, who may not have set up a website, this may seem a daunting prospect. You must set up a website to compliment any marketing strategy, it’s absolutely critical to drive traffic to your site and create strategies for future marketing.
How to set up a website?
Now you have the reasons for having a website, how do you go about getting yourself one?
I recommend your first step will be to visit www.one.com. Here you can see if the domain you want is available. “Domain” is the site you want to own. For example, www.thefemaleentrepreneurhub.com is the domain of this site. There is a box at the top which says “search domain here”. This is where you will type in your business name. For example “Carolsdogwalking”. The list will drop down and give you options. You can select from .co.uk or .com for example. I highly recommend selecting .com if possible. It tends to indicate a business that is more official or a leader. It ranks higher among consumers than say .net.
There are many domain providers, check what you are paying for and if there is a design feature included, otherwise you will end up having to design from scratch which can mean needing to purchase software.
Complete your order
This will take you to an order page. Don’t worry too much about adding extras at this point unless you know exactly what you want. All these extras will be available still after your purchase and you may have more of an idea what you need then. Hint – they also give you offers occasionally so it can be worth holding out unless you really need a service.
You will notice you have a discount applied. As an affiliate, I get paid for you using this service, but you also benefit with a £5 GBP discount! I can assure you I only use one.com for all my various websites. I use them for a few reasons.
- ease of use
- integration of wordpress
- shop facility
- google adwords freebie
- fast customer service
- reliability (I’ve never had a site go down)
- personalised email address
All of this is only £4.80 for 12 months! I fail to see why anyone wouldn’t recommend them to be honest! There are other that are recommended such as Bluehost. To be honest I haven’t used them so I can’t comment on them, however I’m told they are good. I had to choose price as I had minimal funds to start my businesses and that’s where one.com won out.
If you complete the check out process, you will receive an email to confirm your email address. Once this is done you will get a second email to set up a password, then a third to confirm the process is finished.
You have now set up your website congratulations!
What is next in the set up of your domain?
Now you have your domain – for example www.carolsdogwalking.com you need a site. What if you know nothing about website design? Well you can employ a company such as The Search Marketing Shop who can design a professional SEO (search engine optimised) enhanced website for you, which is good for having a sleek-looking site from the get go. However if you have no money for this you may need to design it yourself. Luckily this is relatively easy with two different methods on one.com
Design of your website
You now have two options. You can use the inbuilt Website Builder on one.com or you can use 1 click WordPress installation, both found in the control panel. Both will give you templates to choose from, both give you the freedom to design your own. I have used both, but at the moment I prefer the 1 click WordPress installation as I think you can create a much slicker site far easier. I personally like the Orfeo theme on WordPress, but there are literally hundreds of free themes to choose from. WordPress can feel complicated at first, but it’s well worth having a play with for good results.
Many other providers also integrate WordPress.
If this all feels too much and your budget allows for it, as I said earlier you can have this stage done for you by someone like The Search Marketing Shop, who will design a website for you and help you manage it. They are also experts at getting you to page one of Google which will help drive business your way.
I recommend setting up official email addresses to go with your website.
If you are a one.com user, go to the control panel and you will see mail administration. Here you can set up email addresses such as “email@example.com”. This looks far more professional than firstname.lastname@example.org. This will increase customer trust in your brand. You should set this email up on your mobile phone in an app as well so you get emails directly to your mobile phone. There are tutorials in the one.com help files to assist you with all of this, or your provider should explain how to do it.
It is worthwhile installing the SSL certificate once you have set up your website. If using one.com, you can login into the control panel and scroll right to the bottom where there is an SSL box. If you accept this, your site will be labelled as secure. This means you get the padlock in the address bar and your site becomes https instead of http. Don’t worry if this means nothing to you, it just means that customer’s browsers will be happier opening your page as it’s labelled as secure. Some people have settings on their browsers which won’t open sites without SSL certificates. If this were the case people would not open your site, leading to loss of business.
The end result
You should now have a completed website! You can attach the web address to your emails and social media to start promoting it. It’s also well worth signing up for a free Google analytics account to monitor the traffic and stats in relation to your website.